Even Team Director Andy Flower admitted that there are no guarantees of success following the ground-breaking decision to have Andrew Strauss in charge at Test level, Alastair Cook there for one-day games and Stuart Broad leading out the Twenty20 side.
It all comes about after Strauss’ decision not only to stand down as one-day captain, but also to retire from limited overs cricket.
His Test opening partner Cook did not even make the recent World Cup squad, but with no Strauss at the top of the order the 26-year-old star of the Ashes victory is seen as the right man to take over both roles.
And, of course, it will give him more leadership experience before, as is widely thought likely, he eventually succeeds Strauss – eight years his senior.
Dropping Paul Collingwood a year after he lifted the World Twenty20 Cup was not forced on the selectors, though, and Flower said the 34-year-old was “very disappointed, as you would expect him to be”.
But he described it as entering a new era and Broad, not 25 until next month, was the one chosen after an interview process that included, among other unnamed players, former captain Kevin Pietersen.
Flower, who revealed he has spoken to India over their coaching vacancy before signing a contract extension, said: “I don’t think any side has had three separate captains before.
“We do not know 100 per cent whether it will work or whether it will be the most effective or efficient system, but we are going to give it a try.”
Strauss said: “Ultimately the decision was made because the end of the World Cup is a watershed for all one-day teams and is a time to refresh and regenerate and to move forward.
“I didn’t think in my own mind that for me to start that process knowing full well I wouldn’t be able to see it through to the next World Cup was in the best interests of the team.”
Strauss’ replacement Cook was forced to defend his modest ODI record.
He said: “I’ve worked hard on my limited overs cricket in recent times. I’ve never seen myself as a Test batsman exclusively and I know I have a lot to offer strategically and as a top-order batsman in one-day cricket.”
Broad, meanwhile, vowed to continue his aggressive attitude to the game.
“I think it’s important I keep the same passion as I do every time I put an England shirt on,” he said.
By Mark Garrod